Who Is to Blame: Parents or the Media?

Topics: Obesity, Health care, Nutrition Pages: 5 (1728 words) Published: April 14, 2013
Who is to blame: the Media or the Parents?
It is something that affects your health, mental well-being, and even social status. The risks are addressed each day from doctors around the world, yet obesity is still a growing epidemic. The major problem that many face with this health concern is their age. Childhood obesity is becoming an upward worry, but the causes of it can a different story. Some researchers believe parents are the ones to blame for their children’s weight problems, while other studies show it is what the media is doing. Julia D. La Rocca R.N. PA-C from Davie, Florida believes the parents should be the ones to blame for their children weight. In her article, Childhood Obesity-Is Parental Nurturing To Blame?, she wrote, “major contributing factors to this steady incline are lack of exercise and nutrition. The parents are to blame”. Although the Henry K. Kaiser Family Foundation also believes that the decrease of exercise in children contributes to the rise of obesity, they believe the media is the major cause. While both articles share the same concern for the overweight children in the world, the evidence provided by The Kaiser Family Foundation in their article The Role of Media in Childhood Obesity has a clearer purpose, more creditable facts, and can also capture an audience’s attention faster. A leader in health policy analysis, health journalism and communication, the Kaiser Family Foundation is dedicated to filling the need for information on the major health issue. “Kaiser is a non-profit, private operating foundation focusing on the major health care issues facing the U.S., as well as the U.S. role in global health policy” (Kaiser). Unlike grant-making foundations, Kaiser develops and runs its own research and communications programs, sometimes in partnership with other non-profit research organizations or major media companies (Kaiser). The organization keeps the health policy community on top of the game and helps run campaigns all over the world. It is a reputable company that is very creditable in finding out information (Kaiser). In February of 2004, the Kaiser Family Foundation wrote an issue brief on The Role Of Media In Childhood Obesity. The article explained in depth a variety of different subjects that are linked to media and childhood obesity. The main idea is the correlation between how much media can and does really impact weight gain. Kaiser also wrote about advertisement of unhealthy eating habits, while still maintaining an ideal body weight and how much this can affect the younger generations’ idea of health. An example of this, as Kaiser wrote, “television gives children and teens contradictory messages about dietary habits and ideal body types: be thin, but eat fatty foods, sugary sweets, and salty snakes”. This statement goes on to explain how children can misunderstand and become easily influences by the food content depicted in television shows and movies, but sometimes the media isn’t always a negative influence. Even though most of these studies resulted in a large correlation between inactivity, unhealthy eating, and obesity, the media according to Kaiser, is trying to improve the policy opinions to decrease childhood obesity. The articles states changes like reducing and regulating food ads that are targeted to children, incorporating healthier eating into television storylines, and expanding educational campaigns to promote healthy living and more exercise. Even though these changes might make an impact, the question of media and the influences it has on obesity rates still remains at large. In the article, The Role of Media in Childhood Obesity, the Kaiser Foundation believes that media may contribute to obesity more than what anyone can imagine. The audience it captures also believes that media is the reason that children are suffering from obesity. The Family Foundation has been used as a creditable source for many readers and is easily found in an internet...
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